tv [untitled] October 18, 2010 11:30am-12:00pm PST
last week i attended the international symposium on safe medicine disposal in portland, maine, where a couple of hundred people from around the country who are grappling with these problems got together to compare notes, sharing experience and knowledge. the magnitude of the problems are becoming recognized, because magnitude is staggering. of the $225 billion in prescription medicine prescribed annually, estimates are as high as 40%. which represents 200 million pounds of and use of medication reaching the landfills and waterways. as stated, waste treatment plants are not equipped to properly filled to the use of these medicines. there is an impact on wildlife and human health. there are a lot of studies coming out, which is why
everyone is more concerned about this. in 2002 there was a study that showed of 139,000 screens, 80% had measurable concentrations of prescription and non- prescription medicine. the environment is one problem. the other one is illicit drug use. something that was really highlighted in the conference last week, where law enforcement agencies reported that 55% of illicit drug use today came from family and friends medicine cabinets. it is a growing problem. with today's take back program at san francisco has been running for a while, i think that this ordinance, where the states -- supervisor chiu: thank you very
which is a problem in itself, trying to regulate something that the federal laws will not allow us to do. they have sent a message through the legislation to craft legislation and states to move towards the support of programs. let's allow these processes to take place. why would we want to be out front in this process? it is not like the federal government is dragging its feet by there. let's be part of a broader conversation. this legislation was introduced in april. we appreciate the offices of the supervisor and we have done
amendments that might capture retailers like walgreen's or someone and it would postpone this conversation. supervisor mirkarimi: thank you. >> not exactly on this topic, if i have your permission, i will speak. supervisor chiu: you need to speak directly to the topic at the time. if this is related. ok, great.
next speaker, please. as a representative of the sentence cisco -- san francisco, i am concerned about watershed pollution. this ordinance, what i really need to understand is the empirical data. from what i've heard from the department of the environment, the collection done by the department has been very minimal. recently you heard that the united states drug agency has thousands of pounds of drugs in a day, with several other
federal agencies that are involved in the collection of medicines because of suicides. as has been stated, this is a cause for us to look at this situation in different ways. what we will start doing is informally informing doctors and hospitals, pharmacies, of the source of their medications that are given to be very cautious. plus not just giving a lot of medications. many doctors prescribe medications. sometimes would cause. sometimes without cause. so, it is good for this city of
san francisco to set up a resolution to encourage doctors and other sources to not give out a lot of medications unnecessarily. now, one of the issues that has not been discussed here is animal waste. we have hundreds of thousands of dogs and cats, with waist that winds up in the landfill, in the watershed and the day. we need empirical data and the department of the environment should be one of the leading agencies to collect and give this to us. thank you. supervisor chiu: are there any other members of the public that wish to speak to this item? seeing no one at this time, public comment is close. colleagues? supervisor mirkarimi: thank you. i appreciate the robust
discussion around this. before i forget, i have a number of amendments that have been circulated. i do not know if you want me to go into detail? >> i think that that would be helpful. many of these have been raised based on the initial proposal. supervisor mirkarimi: this ordinance was introduced in april, it was never tabled. it was in the legislation since the time of its introduction. we have taken into consideration a number of concerns that strengthen the ordinance from a retail, manufacturer perspective, making sure that this is lined up effectively. the first amendment, removing the prohibition of selling of drugs in the city if the manufacturer was not in compliance with drug disposal programs.
line 2323. removing from the ordinance the confusion, meaning only manufacturers and importers covered in the ordinance. however, if we find that this is not sufficient in time, reasserting drug wholesalers, illustrated in deletion on the following lines. page four, line 18 to 19, age 11, 19, 12, 5, and the term the elimination of " section. clarifying the definition of producer, manufacturers and importers, page five, line 17. with page 893 and packaging
separated from disposal, clarifying an existing, i would motion that we take those amendments. i very much appreciate the comments from the supervisors that want to strike cautioned with regards to was proceeding. when we brought forward the documents that provided the deliberations in other states in the pharmaceutical industry asking for those states to not go forward, those arguments are incredibly similar to the
arguments we have heard here. those of us waiting for state government to come forward with legislation that uniformly tries to to morton made municipalities throughout california, that would be like waiting for the gedout. it's not going happen. there may be some glimmer of hope, as i had opened in my remarks in the beginning of this deliberation, we were heartened to see the obama administration moving forward and advancing this level of interest. but that level of interest has not been assigned to state and local governments get. this is where the doors open to other levels of government to take up the initiative spirited through the obama administration. there is nothing that says that any of those laws, federally speaking, the state to local governments are precluded from
moving forward. san francisco is no stranger from initiating a law that is then followed by state and federal government. this is not something that we are stranger to. if we are able to investigate what i think would be seen as a pilot program for other municipalities, so be it. if the challenge is to align the municipalities, i see that as a welcome problem. but the absence of any law whatsoever in the state of california should be considered unacceptable. in the discussions with the city attorney during the orchestration of this particular law, there is no unintended consequence with regards to the concerns articulated by the representatives of the manufacturers. lip balm and toothpaste would not be included in this particular law. there would be a more defined segregation to make sure that that would not be an unintended
capture. with regards to take back programs, we hear very differently on mandatory take back programs in canada, as well as europe, completely. the 1998 study that was mentioned about germany, germany is actually one of the leaders in europe right now on the question of recapturing pharmaceuticals from getting into the waste stream. it has been well updated by the parliament of germany that focuses on manufacturer responsibility. the difference is that a lot of the same manufacturers that might come to the united states to debate at the level of the state or even local levels in preventing us from enacting such laws are being reined in in europe and other places for compliance and enforcement. i think that this is the slow trend that will hopefully come to a head. we are a state government now
sees the writing on the wall, having a law that is meaningful and shows efficacy for producer responsibility will alleviate local governments from having to go this direction. let's hope that they do. but it is not on the radar any time soon. i ask that we move forward in san francisco. supervisor chiu: from my perspective, i have been thinking about this for a bit. first, i would like to thank supervisor mirkarimi for accepting the riding of the amendments that he did that were proposed by the industry to make this legislation more effective. i do think that this is an issue that we have all known. the industry, the public has been aware that the lack of places to dispose of medicine has engendered health and safety issues around the country, including here in san francisco.
my understanding is that the city attorney does not opine that that is the case. localities have a constitutional right to address health and safety concerns within our borders. that is what i believe this legislation is doing. i do think, i do believe that the good faith efforts and comments made by the industry and business community that they wish to address this on a voluntary basis. that being said, that has not happened yet. if there are other, smarter ways to do this, now is the time to propose it. i think a number of us are open to hearing that, but it has not happened yet. i appreciate the fact that the obama administration has addressed this general area and i have received a copy of this from industry representatives earlier today.
interestingly, specifically they provide encourage the attorney general to promulgate regulations in this area that specifically states that such regulations may not require any entity to establish or operate a delivery program, which at the end of the day is why it is appropriate for us in san francisco to consider moving forward and proposing a program that hopefully will be efficient and respectful of the needs and issues within the pharmaceutical industry that accomplish the goals that we want to accomplish. i will be supporting this legislation today. that being said, i know that there are still questions and concerns. my office is absolutely willing to meet and hear from various representatives of various stakeholders that need something address. but of the many amendments that have been adopted today, this goes a long way towards addressing those concerns.
if there are any additional discussions? let's call the roll. can we adopted this? let's call a role. >> on the motion to refer this item to the full board? supervisor elsbernd? no. supervisor mirkarimi? aye. supervisor chiu? aye. two ayes, one no. supervisor chiu: with that, madam clerk, is there any more business in front of this board? >> no, supervisor chiu: mr. chairmanchiu thank you -- no, mr. chairman. supervisor chiu: thank you, at this time this meeting is adjourned.
there is our relationship to the planet. these regions are the wealthiest, the most powerful. that really has impacted the planet. it is almost impossible now to go anywhere and had it really be completely dark. there are very few locations that you can find. that means our relationship to the sky, there is a way where we dominate the sky. we cannot see anything really. we are blinding ourselves in a way. >> you can look at the images,
they are beautiful. when i started four years ago, there was a conversation about environmental issues that was very different. this is not being talked about in the way it is now. . this has just been like an amazing growth. i anticipate the project to be something that opens a dialogue to public interest in these ideas. so the work is really made to be seen in this environment. it's been show in museum, in gallery, but never in a public setting.
and it's kind of ideal for both myself and the works to have this real dialogue with the public not only in san francisco but people coming from all over the world. >> since the dawn of electricity, that light is something that people feel connected to and inspired by. personally, there is space to keep that alive, just finding balance. the key is to find some balance.
a treasure within san francisco, because the presidio trust is really a national park in the center of an urban setting. it dates to the very founding of the city. national park. toting me today to talk about this amazing exhibition at presidio habitat is cheryl hanes. can you tell me a little bit about the idea of the presidio habitat? >> succinctly, i have been long involved in the presidio. i was here when it was still a
military base in the 1980's. i remember driving down walmart to the golden gate bridge and seeing the military guard at the gate and being utterly fascinated. >> so presidio habitat is an exhibition where you have invited, how many artists to think about the habitat? >> we put together a list of possible participants, local, national, or international, of people who are concerned with environmental concerns, made some sort of contribution to the landscape and conversation we're having here. we said that broke -- proposal requests and we received 25 back. from that 25, we went through and chose tend to realize in the
landscape. >> including this building, which is an amazing example of recycling. >> we are proud of this space. it was designed by a local architecture team. we said, we need something that is a temporary structure, something that can be brought onto the presidio in pieces, act as an exhibition space for one year. we came up with the notion of shipping containers. it was important for us that we made this project for the place, of the place. what i mean by that is participants would also used repurchased materials. >> we will be speaking to one of the artists that you selected. what excited you about his idea? >> have many things. first of all, i am a fan of his
architecture. because of that creativity, i knew that he could come up with something unique. i love the fact that he was specifically addressing the landscape around here, and it was also about the human interaction with this place. >> what are your expectations with the people coming to presidio habitat? >> we really hope people will come with their family, dogs, and come back a number of times the works will change over the year. the feedback we are getting is you cannot do all of them on one visit. it is really better to come back and have different experiences. >> thank you. i am with mark jensen of jensen
architect. he was one of the architects to be chosen to do the presidio habitat. when you heard about this project, what inspired you about that call? >> our inspiration is a great blue heron. it was the site itself that attracted us. this is an incredibly beautiful outdoor room. we did a bit of reverse engineering once we knew we wanted to work here. which animals live here? the great blue heron jumped out at us. we walked around, and quickly, you get into another pace. you slow down, leave the city behind you. you can feel the wind and the breeze. in our increasingly frenetic, fast-paced, connected life, the
chance to be of here and slow down a bit was part of the agenda. as part of the installation, it was suggested that this would be deliberately not mowed because it would allow the sustaining of insects, plants, that would graduate -- that would gravitate to the area. >> that is right. i think you quickly notice that. >> thank you for being here. presidio habitat is an exhibition at the presidio trust. it will be in san francisco through may 2011. we hope you will come out to experience this amazing exhibition and great natural treasure. >> to learn more about the other habitats installations in the presidio, visit